Ted Cruz is the most sleazy and oily politician that I have seen in decades. Watch his face as he telegraphs his lying eyes with a perpetual smirk to the whole world. Why are we so tempted to believe smarmy lying and fear mongering when it comes to race, or health care, or immigration, and on and on?
And why do so few in the media step up and face down this lying?
Gore Vidal once wrote a book, The Republic of Amnesia, and his big point is that we simply cannot learn from the past. Any fear-monger will be heard because our television journalist simply don't have the learned knowledge or background or political will to call out the lies and fabrications.
We rank 37th in health statistics among the democracies and near-democracies. All medicine in the U.S. is socialized in the sense that medical research, pharmaceutical research and so forth is funded by government by forbidding negotiation on pharmaceuticals. We give drug companies an incredible “pass” on the costs of drugs in the U.S., allowing the public to pay top dollar but the military, the VA and so forth to buy pharmaceuticals at the same price asthe drug companies sell it to their countries.
Nearly all democracies and near-democracies negotiate on drug prices; we don’t and hence the money paid to those Republicans and Dems who serve on the relevant committees get a huge haul for financing their campaigns. Congress is well-paid to short-change the American people. Medical and surgical devices in most Western counteres are half the price we pay here.
Again, here in the U.S. we allow drug or pharmaceutical companies to charge what they want, and the public pays for it...through the nose.
Richard Nixon and Wilbur Mills designed a simple and really workable universal health care system back in the early 1970s where the insurance companies would become “carriers” and enroll and maintain the system for set fees. (A stripper from Baltimore ended that remarkable simply compromise. )
Why the press can't relentlessly remind Americans that the GOP lies to the public through their teeth about government and no one has been able to make us look at ourselves and say, “Why are we so consistently dopes for the “small government” crowd?” What results is half-assed change that drives spending over the top and lets the public pay for it.
The GOP hates Obamacare because it works and because it is sowing the seeds for a universal, and cheaper per capita, system, yet each time the GOP brings it up, not one commentator contradicts their conclusion that Obamacare is a disaster.
Overall, the GOP wants small government and lower taxes but they wind up supporting big government rigged to placate and reward producer groups generously. Even Taiwan, about 15 years ago, commissioned experts to design a new health care system and the experts chose, guess what, single payer. What is truly awful about this is we could have more health for all, if the South and some parts of the nether regions of the U.S. joined Obamacare to expand Medicaid to cover all poor people, white or black.
Finally, physicians want medicine to be socialized on their behalf but hate socializing on behalf of the public. I gave a talk to the AMA annual winter meeting and I outlined the approach we hoped to follow in New York (but Cuomo chickened out), and audience went wild with hands waving in the air.
Finally, I said this: Why don’t each of you write down how much you think you need, annually, to be rewarded for your talents and your knowledge, and, with other physicians win agreement from all other doctors, and we, the public will pay you that as your annual salary....just as long as organized medicine doesn’t try to screw up the American health care system by demanding more, more, and more.
In Canada, every hospital of any size has a small office that attends to billing foreigners, mainly Americans, preparing bills to American insurance companies or Medicare. Our daughter Val once had emergency surgery (appendicitis as I recall) in Sweden, and Sweden sent her insurance company (Blue Cross) the bill, and it was less than half what the procedure would cost here in the U.S. The Blue Cross company was happy to pay for it.